Four Wonderful Lensic Movies

Casey St. Charnez - November 22, 2013

'This Thanksgiving weekend, our town gets a rare chance to see a quartet of terrific flicks on the big Lensic screen.'

This Thanksgiving weekend, our town gets a rare chance to see a quartet of terrific flicks on the big Lensic screen.

Friday Nov. 29 it’s 20000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954) at 2 p.m. and The Band Wagon (1953) at 7 p.m.

Then on Saturday Nov. 30, they’re showing Hatari! (1962) at 2 p.m. and North By Northwest (1959) at 7 p.m.

Every one of them is a guaranteed splendid time at the movies. But what’s really cool is that they will be presented most nobly in genuine, old-fashioned, 35-millimeter. And Technicolor, too. They’re not digital files or Blu-Rays or software. They’re the real deal, once again spooling their way through a projector, like it was 60 years ago.

These four movies are the premiere event in a collaboration between the Lensic and the Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), the Oscar people. They’re all from the Academy Film Archive.

AMPAS established its Archive in 1991, its mission statement to curate a collection of the best possible prints of all the Academy Award-winning and –nominated features and documentaries. Four climate-controlled vaults hold in excess of 165,000 film and video treasures, both known and obscure. In the last decade alone, over 400 titles have undergone restoration and preservation under their auspices.

The Friday and Saturday shows are the premiere event in the Lensic/AMPAS lineup. Dec. 27 brings another super pair: White Christmas (1954) at 2 p.m. and Lawrence of Arabia (1962) at 7 p.m.  

These are all rare opportunities to behold a motion picture in its natural habitat, in the Moorish Gothic cathedral of the cinema that is the Lensic. It makes one thankful, indeed. 

Tickets are $7 adult general admission, $5 for the under-18s. The balcony will remain closed unless the size of the crowd merits opening it.

Tickets are available by calling the Lensic box office at 505-988-1234; by visiting or; and by stopping by 211 W. San Francisco St.

Now, if only they had a popcorn machine, life would be perfect.